Filming has begun on The Amazing Mr Blunden, a Sky Original family adventure for Christmas 2021. Written and directed by Mark Gatiss (Sherlock, Dracula, Doctor Who) and produced by Adorable Media in association with Sky Studios, the 90-minute film will air on Sky and streaming service NOW forming a highlight of the festive schedule.
Starring Simon Callow (Four Weddings and A Funeral, Shakespeare in Love) as Mr Blunden with Mark Gatiss and Tamsin Greig (Friday Night Dinner, Episodes) as Mr and Mrs Wickens. It introduces Tsion Habte and Jason Rennie as Lucy and Jamie Allen, alongside India Fowler and Xavier Wilkins as Sara and Georgie Latimer.
In the Sky Original, Christmas adventure arrives for London teenagers Jamie and Lucy Allen in the form of a mysterious old man, Mr Blunden, who offers their mum the opportunity to become the caretaker of a ruined country house – one that’s said to be haunted. Within its neglected, overgrown grounds, Jamie and Lucy have an encounter with what appears to be a pair of ghost children. But these spooky kids, Sara and Georgie, aren’t actually ghosts. They’ve travelled forwards in time to seek help, believing they’re going to be murdered by the wicked Mr and Mrs Wickens. And Lucy and Jamie’s strange visitor seems to be the key to it all. With his help, they must travel back to 1821 to save Sara and Georgie and redeem their remorseful new friend - The Amazing Mr Blunden.
Jon Mountague, Director of Comedy, Sky Studios, said: “When we learnt that the incomparable Mark Gatiss wanted to update this absolute classic for the 21st century, we thought all our Christmases had come at once. The Amazing Mr Simon Callow and Tamsin Greig complete a trio of national treasures, and introducing an incredible young cast alongside, we couldn’t be prouder – roll on Christmas!”
Mark Gatiss, Director, said: “To me, everything about ‘The Amazing Mr Blunden’ is magical. A ghost story with a sentimental heart. A costume drama with a time-travelling twist. Scary villains, melancholy, laughter and joy. I first came across the wonderful original film at primary school when it was shown on a battered old projector on that most hallowed of occasions - the last Friday before the Christmas holidays. In our new version, as in the book, the Allen family are very much from the modern world. I can’t wait to share the adventure with a whole new audience”.
The Amazing Mr Blunden is adapted from the novel ‘The Ghosts’ by Antonia Barber and the 1972 film of the same name. It was commissioned by Zai Bennett, Managing Director of Content for Sky UK and Ireland and Jon Mountague, Sky Studios’ Director of Comedy. Produced by Richelle Wilder and Isibeal Ballance, directed and written by Mark Gatiss, the show is executive produced by Adorable Media, Can Do Productions, Handmade Films and Jon Mountague for Sky Studios. NBCUniversal Global Distribution will handle international sales of the film on behalf of Sky Studios.
The Amazing Mr Blunden will air on Sky and streaming service NOW this Christmas.
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Notes to Editors
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About Sky Studios
Sky Studios brings to screen unique stories from the very best talent in Europe.
We develop, produce and fund original drama, comedy and documentary for Sky’s 24m customers and beyond, with 52 scripted shows already in production. Building on the success of critically-acclaimed Sky originals including Emmy-winning Chernobyl, Bafta-winning Patrick Melrose and international hits Babylon Berlin and Riviera, Sky Studios is the new creative home of Sky originals, such as The Third Day with Jude Law, ZeroZeroZero from the makers of Gomorrah and The New Pope directed by Academy Award-winning director Paolo Sorrentino.
We’re an agile Studio, seeking out the best untold stories from new voices while working in creative partnership with today’s best writers, producers and on-screen talent to bring viewers stories they wouldn’t find anywhere else.
With commissioning talent and production capability across the UK, Germany and Italy, we understand local tastes across Europe better than anyone else and have plans to more than double our investment in original content by 2024, fully supported and backed by Comcast NBC Universal.
We’re also developing a new TV and movie studio, Sky Studios Elstree, which is expected to lead to the creation of over 2,000 new jobs and generate an additional £3 billion of production investment in UK creative sector in the first five years alone.
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Sky Studios launched in June 2019. The senior leadership team is Chief Executive Officer Gary Davey, Chief Commercial Officer Jane Millichip, Chief Finance Officer Caroline Cooper, Director of Drama UK Cameron Roach, Director of Comedy UK Jon Mountague, Director Original Production Sky Italia Nils Hartmann, and Director Original Productions Sky Deutschland Marcus Ammon.